‘Call Security,’ Student Union VPs

Chaos as Council Grapples with Resignation Fallout

Photo by Julia Jones

As one of the most heated Council meetings in Concordia Student Union history degenerated into chaos on March 9, two CSU executives called for security to remove the 80 students in attendance.

Packed into a small conference room in the Hall building, the student union executive was confronted by angry constituents when President Heather Lucas called for the Council to go into closed session.

She claimed her executive needed secrecy to deal with the resignation of former VP Sustainability & Promotions Morgan Pudwell.

“This is fucking bullshit,” said student Alex Matak after all but four of the 30 councillors approved the request. “I’m not leaving, [Lucas] can drag me out of this meeting herself.”
Facing accusations of financial wrongdoing, intimidation and political patronage, Lucas claimed she needed privacy to discuss personnel issues surrounding Pudwell’s resignation.

As students refused to leave, the meeting devolved into a shouting match between the majority of the Council who sided with the president, and the students sitting around the councillors.

An impassioned plea by Councillor Steven Brown for the Council to listen to the students and minimize the items discussed in private went largely ignored. CSU VPs Ramy Khoriaty and Hassan Abdullahi called on Chair Marc-Antoni Tarondo to have security forcefully remove their constituents.

Security, attracted by the yelling and volume of students, refused to enter the room, telling students that they did not have the right to remove them.

“Would calling security have resolved anything,” asked Tarondo. “Look how many students were at the meeting, they wouldn’t have been able to remove them.”

Unwilling to call security and with the yelling continuing, Tarondoadjourned the meeting.

“My hands are tied,” Tarondo told a room that had descended into what one councillor described as a “mutiny.”

With the CSU General Election campaign starting on Monday, any rescheduling of the meeting will happen during campaigning. a time when tensions will only be higher.